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Media Transparency: light at the end of the tunnel?

Media Marketing Compliance (MMC) recently hosted a webinar on the subject of Media Transparency and whether it is improving in the light of market recent revelations, especially in the ‘Programmatic’ (i.e. automated) market.

We examined recent reports into market practices and asked our expert panellists to comment on whether progress is being made.

Speaking as a Marketing and Media specialist, Gerry D’Angelo proposed new ways to achieve transparency; Tina Fegent addressed the ways that Procurement can contribute to better processes; Nick Swimer spoke of the legal and contractual ways to get better visibility; and Stephen Broderick showed how to address the latest ways to achieve strong contractual complisance.

Our distinguished panel all saw some flickers of light, but the consensus was that Media Transparency remains one of the most important needs for advertisers, and much more can and should be done.

While the panel provided some good guidance on the way ahead it is worth reiterating why this subject should remain in the spotlight.

Brand-owners need media transparency in order to make well-informed budget allocations and the right channel choices.

They also need transparency to ensure that their media is bought as effectively and efficiently as possible, with the minimum of waste.

It provides visibility of where ads go, who is exposed to them and what the outcome is. It identifies where ads are placed, whether they are seen or heard (or both) and what the audience was, real or manufactured.

It is important to ensure that their commercial partners are working openly in the interests of the brand-owner, not themselves. A lack of transparency creates conflicts of interest in decision-making and often leads to the advertiser’s commercial partners earning revenue that they should not.

It is needed to provide the kind of business accountability that Procurement personnel deliver for their business, such as adherence to contracts and value of services rendered.

There is nothing too controversial about that, is there? It’s how professional business should work.

However, this is very far from the reality of today’s advertising industry.

Media transparency simply does not exist. Some channels are better than others, some media agencies provide it more than others, some supply-chains also do. But it is partial at best....

This article was originally published for Marketing Procurement IQ and can be read in full on the website.The subject of Media Transparency will be discussed further at another webinar from MMC on November 1st with the focus on the Americas. Register here.

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